Gestation length and birth weight in relation to intake of marine n-3 fatty acids

S.F. Olsen, H.S. Hansen, N.J. Secher, Benny Jensen, B. Sandstrom

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

It has been hypothesized that marine n-3 fatty acids ingested during pregnancy prolong duration of pregnancy and increase fetal growth rate in humans. By a combined self-administered questionnaire and interview applied in the 30th week of gestation we assessed dietary intake of marine n-3 fatty acids and energy in a population-based sample of 965 pregnant Danish women; in a random 14 % subsample we also measured marine n-3 fatty acids relative to arachidonic acid (FA-ratio) in erythrocytes. Mean intake of marine n-3 fatty acids was 0.25 (95 % range 0-0.75) g We could detect no association between n- 3 fatty acid intake and FA-ratio on the one hand, and gestation length, birth weight and birth length on the other. The analyses were adjusted for maternal height, prepregnant weight, parity and smoking. The conclusion from the study was that within the intake range of this population, marine n-3 fatty acids ingested in the weeks prior to the 30th week of pregnancy seem not to be a predictor of gestation length or fetal growth rate.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBritish Journal of Nutrition
Volume73
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)397-404
ISSN0007-1145
Publication statusPublished - 1995

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